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Insurance Industry News from ProgramBusiness.comGetting on with Business
The Chief Executive of Marsh & McLennan Cos. said he will no longer apologize for past misdeeds at the insurance broker. "I'm not going to apologize anymore. We've apologized enough," said CEO Michael Cherkasky at the company's annual meeting in New York.
The world's largest insurance broker agreed to pay the $850 million into a fund to settle charges by New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer that it conspired with insurers to rig bids on insurance contracts.
Cherkasky went out of his way to say the company has changed since Spitzer first announced his lawsuit against Marsh last October. "I know corruption and this company is not corrupt," the former prosecutor said.
He pointed out changes that have been made to the company's board, management, overall structure and lines of business, saying it now needs to look forward and not dwell on past problems.
Yet a shareholder complained the company's stock has lost a huge amount of value since the Spitzer lawsuit. Shares now trade around $30 compared with about $46 just before the suit was announced. At that time of the settlement Cherkasky had said Marsh was "ashamed" at the conduct of "a few" of its employees. But he stopped short of admitting corporate wrongdoing, which could provide ammunition to others suing the company. "We are enormously sorry that we employed people who went outside the scope of what we expected them to do and broke our rules and regulations," Cherkasky said in an interview after the settlement.
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